Telegram to shut down 'terrorist-related' channels

This article is more than 12 months old

JAKARTA Encrypted messaging service Telegram will shut down "terrorist-related" public channels, its founder said yesterday, after Indonesia's government blocked access to the platform citing security concerns.

Indonesia, home to the world's largest Muslim population, has seen a resurgence in home-grown radicalism and has stepped up cooperation with its neighbours to stem a growing presence in South-east Asia of extremist group ISIS.

Last Friday, the Indonesian authorities blocked all access to Telegram, saying it had several forums that were "full of radical and terrorist propaganda".

Mr Pavel Durov, founder of the messaging app, said there had been a "miscommunication" with the Indonesian authorities, as he was not aware of a request by the government to take down certain channels.

"Telegram is heavily encrypted and privacy-oriented, but we're no friends of terrorists," Mr Durov said, adding that he was "upset" over the ban.

He said that since the ban, Telegram had taken steps to block certain channels reported by the Indonesian government to carry terrorism-related content.